Tag Archives: Technology

SiriusXM Internet Radio timeout, a simple workaround

SiriusXM offers their radio stations online on a browser based interface for an additional $2.99/month. Great! What is not so great is the timeout for inactivity after 90 minutes or so. In other words if you are not interacting with the player’s window for a period of an hour and a half, the music stops playing.

There’s a slew of third party applications out there but all of them stopped working when SiriusXM redesigned their website on February 4.

I’ve seen suggestions out there to use AutoMouseClicker but it works only for a while as SiriusXM will still log you out after a while so I went back to third party applications to see if one of them had an update that would work and found XMTuner. The GUI is very basic but it seems so far to be doing what it is suppose to do with at least one cool feature.

All you really need to do is enter your XM or Sirius username and password (make sure to check the “autologin” box), the channels allowed on your subscription will then populate the channels window. Right-click on a channel and hit play. You’re done.

I suppose where this piece of software really shines is for an application I don’t need it for at all; it can serve SiriusXM radio to other computers and devices on a network. It can even convert the stream to other audio formats like wav or mp3 if you install the third party application TVersity.

As of today, this is the best solution I’ve found. I thought it was worth sharing.

This product saved me $600

I dropped my HTC Incredible and shattered the screen. I was informed by Verizon that I had the extended warranty but not the insurance. Their suggestion? Buy a new one at full retail price or $599.99… Right…
I’ll be honest, I am technically inclined and it still made me nervous to take my phone apart even with those handy instructions: […]
It took me a couple of hours but I was able to take it apart, replace the screen and put it back together. Words of advice:
. If you’re all thumbs, have someone else do it.
. Make sure to disconnect ALL ribbon cables before removing the motherboard. Be especially mindful of the small ribbon cable going through the track-pad’s hole.
. You will spend most of your time removing the glued-on shattered glass from the frame so you’ll want to have a waste basket near by and possibly a small vacuum.
I rated the product 4 out of 5 stars because of the lack of adhesive to hold the screen in place. Clear double sided tape works fine but I still feel it should be included.
Nevertheless my phone works flawlessly and looks like out of the box for $35 and a couple of hours of work instead of $600.
What more can I ask for?

Review posted at amazon.com

Nike + iPod = The best $30 I’ve ever spent

The first part of the video is focusing on the Nike + SportBand, a product that has been recalled by Nike back in November 2008 so don’t pay to much attention. What I’ll focusing on in this post is the Nike + iPod Sport Kit.
So ahem yes, farewell Nike + SportBand we hardly knew you. Now going back to the Nike + iPod Sport Kit if you have any model of iPod Nano or an iPod Touch second generation this baby will only set you back $30 and here is why. Nike and Apple are telling you that you’ll need the Nike + running shoes but in reality you don’t. I am personally using the DLO action pocket but you could easily make your own.In fact this I believe most of the issues people are having with Nike + are related to inaccurate information. For example this video is wrong.

At no point are you presented with a login window in iTunes and that left me scratching my head for a while until I figured, all I had to do was sync my iPod then chose to visit nikeplus.com when offered by iTunes and use the “save your run” function.Love:

Spoken Feedback: While running and listening to music on your iPod you will get feedback on the distance you have already run or what is left once you pass the halfway point. They will come up every mile or kilometer based on your preferences and you can chose a male or female voice. You can also manually trigger feedbacks by hitting the center button.

Distance measuring units: You can select miles or kilometers depending on your personal taste and of course if your training for distances like 5 or 10k.

Power Song: Oh man this is one of my favorite features! Select a song on your iPod that motivates you when running and when you need a little boost all you have to do is hold down the center button (before you ask: Gonna Fly Now)

Workout Options: Not only can you select time , calories or distance but distance covers everything from a 1k to a Marathon! If you have no specific goal in mind you can just select basic and Nike + will just keep track of your run. Also the workouts you are using the most will appear on the very first menu.

The Nikeplus website: Ok, I have to admit, I hated it at the beginning but I really got into it and I love the options of setting youself goals and also register for challenges with other Nike + runners.

Hate:

The Nikeplus website: But more specifically the social networking aspect of it. To use a video game analogy it’s like Nintendo’s friend’s codes. They’ve made it so safe, you can’t really hook up with anybody unless you use the forums and I find them for the moment at best confusing.

User’s Manual and online Tutorials: Both contain either wrong or outdated informations.

It’s easy to recommend the Nike + iPod Sport Kit. It’s well designed and fairly easy to use. I wrote in this post mostly about the technical aspect of things but the incredible value comes in the motivation it gives you to run. You just want to get out there and not make a complete ass of yourself.

On a final note if you’re considering accessories, you might want to skip the Nike + iPod Watch remote, I didn’t find it particularly useful.

P.S.: The sport kit is only compatible with the iPod Nano and the iPod Touch second generation or higher, not any other models of iPods.

The Beat Goes On

[12:50 PM] Today is the day I might get the iPod I alway dreamed of. The Apple store is down which tells me it will be available today. 10 minutes to wait before the event starts.

[12:53 PM] Gizmodo is reporting the event is packed… No kidding… 7 minutes to go. I’m dying…

[12:58 pm] iMac on stage so we can expect some news on the iTunes front. I can’t take it anymore!!!!

[1:00 PM] Here we go!

[1:02 PM] And we are starting with iTunes.

[1:03 PM] Numbers, pie charts… #3 Music retailer in the US… Come on!!!!!

[1:05 PM] I keep refreshing the iTunes site and it’s still 7.3. Oh! OK apparently not until tonight.

[1:06 PM] Ringtones… Well I don’t have an iPhone…

[1:10 PM] “Give Peace a Chance is for when NBC calls”. That’s funny.

[1:12 PM] Badabing! complete new line of iPods!!!! Aaaaaahhhhh!!!

[1:14 PM] Rumors were true for the Nano. It will support video. Looks boxy.

[1:17 PM] Awwww man that thing is so thin!

[1:18 PM] Games! So if there are gamers on the Nano, I guess we can expect games on the big boy.

[1:23 PM] “iPod Nano Battery life: 24 hours of audio playback, 5 hours of video playback.” Holy Molly!!!

[1:24 PM] Will be in store this weekend? Noooooo! In store today! It’s got to be in store today!

[1:27 PM] iPod classic. Wooooo.

[1:28 PM] 160 GB of goodness! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

[1:38 pm] It is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen….

[1:47 PM] A few weeks, a few weeks? I can’t wait a few weeks!!!!

[1:49 PM] The iTunes Wi-Fi Music Store. So rumor was true…

[2:04 PM] So I was blinsided for a second here. $399 for 16gb on the touch and $399 for 160gb on the classic? I have to do some thinking here.

[2:10 PM] I think it’s going to be a touch.

The magic wand

I’ve searched the land a long time for the Holy Grail of universal remotes and my quest is now over. The Harmony Advanced Universal Remote for Xbox 360 is the answer. Not only does it control everything I have at home that can be controlled with a remote (including the A/C) but you can also program macros called activities like “watch TV” or “watch DVD” or “listen to Radio”.What makes this remote special is the XBox 360 buttons. I generally agree with the CNet video review of the product:

But do not agree with the written review. I have no problem with the numeric keypad and I don’t think the interface to program the remote is intimidating at all. As a matter of fact I thought it was really user friendly. As far as rechargeable batteries I’ll have to see how fast I go through one set.

It took me about 30mn to setup all the devices and activities (installation of the software included) which I thought was really good. My main problem when it comes to universal remotes has always been the Scientific Atlanta 8300HD. Since it is my cable box but also my DVR it is by far the element of my entertainment center that has the most complex remote. I was shocked to realize that every single functions was there, I’d lie if I said it didn’t take a bit of getting use to it, but it’s all there.

I also love the “glow” button since I usually watch TV with the lights out.

My box of remotes is now in storage. One remote to rule them all.

$99 at Circuit City.